Blogging? Tweeting? Facebooking? Homeland Security Is Watching You
What you say, especially if you're a journalist, could wind up in the files of the Department of Homeland Security.
The National Operations Center, a branch of the Department of Homeland Security, has a new initiative that until now quietly became standard policy for monitoring journalists. Beginning last November, the NOC has written permission from DHS to "retain data on users of social media and online networking platforms." So, Big Brother is tracking what is written, posted and said online. While the Feds say it's about journalists, these days just about anyone who consistently comments, posts or blogs about politics or other significant subjects could be considered a journalist. This new "rule" came out as a result of the Wikileaks case when the whistleblower website resisted government efforts to get information from their Twitter accounts. While such information could be necessary in genuine matters of national security, the website rt.com questions this idea:
"The department says that they will only scour publicly-made info available while retaining data, but it doesn’t help but raise suspicion as to why the government is going out of their way to spend time, money and resources on watching over those that helped bring news to the masses."
If you think it's strictly for government "security", think again. Again, from rt.com:
"The website Fast Company reports that the intel collected by the Department of Homeland Security under the NOC Monitoring Initiative has been happening since as early as 2010 and the data is being shared with both private sector businesses and international third parties"
So, whatever you regularly post about could be saved in some hard drive with the Feds. Hmm...